Pronounced: dih-sid-uh-RAY-tuh (alt 1: dih-sid-uh-RAH-tuh) (alt 2: dih-zid-uh-RAY-tuh)
Notes: This is a plural noun; once again, this is a word I could have figured out, but I didn’t until after reading about it
The word nuncupate means
- to solemnly pronounce
- to declare a will orally
This word came into English in the mid-1500s
Background / Comments
Our word comes from Latin nuncupare (to name), which is composed of nomen (name) and capere (to seize). As I noted yesterday, the adjectival form nuncupative (spoken rather than written; oral) may be more familiar (at least, it is to me; I’m pretty sure I’ve run across “nuncupative will” in my reading). The idea of nuncupative wills goes back to Roman law. Back then, it had to be heard by seven witnesses, and later presented to a magistrate. In the United States, some states allow oral wills, but usually in extreme circumstances, such as imminent peril of death from a terminal illness or from military or maritime service. It is common to require that such wills be recorded in writing within a specific time frame. Witnesses are required. It’s probably easier to have one drawn up that attempt to nuncupate.